As a self-employed person who pays quarterly tax estimates and has lots of employers, April 15 is an especially rotten day of the year -- and not just because I once again waited until the last minute to file my annual return. It's because the whole tax system is insanely complicated, confusing, frustrating, and, duh, expensive. (Hey, government: I don't mind you skimming some off the top, but I do have some quibbles with how you're spending it. Call me, we'll talk.)
Thankfully, some companies are trying to make Tax Day a little less painful by offering some nifty deals and freebies. Among the highlights:
1. Taxes are only a figurative pain in the neck, but HydroMassage is offering literal relief with a free HydroMassage anytime between April 15 and 19 with this coupon. Make sure to check the freebie locator to find a location near you, then call ahead to schedule an appointment. I've never tried one of these, but you can bet I'll be trying one now.
2. Looking for a new phone? Video-chat app-maker ooVoo, via wireless reseller Simplexity, is offering a free Android smartphone when you sign up for a new account or renew an existing one (with a two-year service plan, natch). Available models include the Motorola Droid Razr M and Samsung Galaxy S2 among others, with service provided by Sprint, T-Mobile, or Verizon. OoVoo, in case you're wondering, lets you make free voice and video calls and send free instant messages.
3. Need to make a copy of your tax return? Or some copies of something else? On April 15 and 16, Office Depot will give you a free black-and-white copy of your tax return (up to 25 pages), or just 25 free copies. You can also get 5 pounds' worth of free document shredding, which I find hilarious given the day.
4. Nothing soothes the pain of handing over most of your hard-earned money to Uncle Sam (Worst. Uncle. Ever.) like a rich, gooey cinnamon roll. Or, better, two of them: On April 15, from 6 to 8 p.m. at participating locations, Cinnabon will give you two free Cinnabon Bites. And while you're stuffing your roll-hole, why not head to Arby's for a free small order of curly fries? (Snarky answer: because Arby's fries are terrible. But at least they're free!)
5. Already done with your return? Then you've earned a break on the couch. Starting now, and lasting through Sunday or Monday, many cable/satellite providers are offering free access to Encore and Starz. The dates and details vary depending on the provider, and we lucky Comcast subscribers are left out in the cold with nothing, but for everyone else, it's all "Spartacus," all weekend.
Have you found any other good Tax Day giveaways? Share them in the comments!